Espresso | Espresso at home | Home Espresso Makers
Years ago this would have been a very costly investment that most people wouldn't be able to afford. However, today there are many quality espresso machines can be found online and in retail brick and mortar shops that can be purchased for under a hundred dollars or just a little more than a hundred. Naturally, a higher quality machine will cost more but will also last much longer. A coffee grinder is also necessary when making espresso. Espresso requires a very find grind and a consistent grind so that the espresso is also top quality every time it is brewed. Burr coffee grinders are the best choice but if it is out of the budget a blade grinder will suffice. Fresh coffee beans are a highly important factor when making espresso. The beans should be bought in quantities that will be used quickly so they don't lose their flavor. Arabica coffee beans are typically used for espresso; however, any bean that the individual wants can be used to make espresso. After the coffee has been ground it must be placed in the basket that goes in the espresso machine. The tamper that comes with the espresso machine should be used to tamp the coffee grounds into the espresso basket. The tamping is important and should be tamped with about thirty pounds of pressure. This packs the coffee into a very dense disk. Once the coffee is pressed into the espresso maker's basket it is placed back under the water spout. The water pressure and steam from an espresso maker is very high and care should be taken to insure the basket is placed tightly. Making an espresso is called pulling a shot and the art of pulling a shot correctly is something that takes time and practice. A shot should typically take twenty-five to thirty seconds from start to finish.
The espresso should go straight from the cup to being served or to being added to the coffee drink that is being made, such as cappuccino. Espresso will cool quickly and should not be allowed to sit for any length of time before serving. Fresh espresso from home is not difficult as long as the proper tools are available. It doesn't take a large budget to outfit a kitchen with a simple espresso maker, in fact, the money saved not going to the coffee shop on a daily basis will more than pay for the espresso machine over time.
- Alex Nikitin